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T volunteer Experience Latin America Costa Rica . Ecuador . honduras . Peru [ be more than just a tourist ] amount of reinforcement material, a cored system would be required to separate the laminate skins and provide adequate beam stiffness. A conventional foam or core system would have incurred prohibitively lengthy and additional process cycles and added the additional complication of kitting and forming to complex geometry. Joins and core drop- outs would also read through to the A- surface and prevented a class- A surface from being achieved. The solution was to use a syntactic core - a resin film filled with microspheres. This not only gives a low- cost core system, but also maintains the drapability of the fibre reinforcement whilst greatly reducing the amount of expensive reinforcement material over a monolithic laminate. In standard form, the CBS comprises surface film, 200gsm twill weave carbon, 0.7mm syntactic core and 400gsm twill weave glass. Finite element analysis ( FEA) combined with Gurit's analytical expertise was used first to determine the CTE of each component and then later optimize each layer to give a fully balanced laminate that prevents the panel from warping with changing temperature. The glass and carbon layers each have a single resin film that is applied to the syntactic core to again create a SPRINT structure of two external fibre layers with a resin core. In practice, the assembly of this kit of materials from the individual layers allows for the joints between adjacent plies to be staggered in a scarf arrangement. This allows ply joins to be situated on class- A surfaces without the risk of read through on to the A- surface. The structural layers consist of this single pre- assembled laminate, which is kitted prior to lay up. The material system requires only two plies to be laminated to produce a part. Combined with the air evacuation properties of SPRINT, no intermediate de- bulks are required

between plies, giving a cost- effective laminate scheme that allows for rapid layup by reducing processing times and labour content. From Tier 2 to Tier 1 Having supplied material as a Tier 2 supplier on niche vehicle projects such as the Rover MG SV, Gurit took the decision to invest in a pilot facility and manufacture SPRINT CBS components as a Tier 1 supplier. Prior to this decision by Gurit, the development project ALBOS ( Advanced Lightweight Body Structures) - run in conjunction with Aston Martin Lagonda Ltd - lead to the company securing the production of the fenders, hood and deck- lid assemblies on the DBS. The challenge then was to productionise the technology from previously short series, low volume processing - vacuum bagged, oven cured parts in pre- preg tooling - to a robust and cost- effective process for major premium vehicle OEM build rates. Gurit's approach to part manufacture was to avoid traditional oven or autoclave batch curing processes that rely on optimising facility usage rates for productivity. The varied complexity of the parts and the corresponding variation layup times would create a situation where the less complex parts would be loaded for cure whilst the more complex parts would be at layup or bagging stages. The solution to avoiding moulding batch issues was to specify standalone nickel shell tools, which are heated individually. Heating and cooling are provided from a central boiler and chiller unit that pipes oil to a number of mould stations. Moulds are connected to the heating system via dry connectors, allowing tools to be disconnected and moved freely. The relative low mass and direct heating and cooling system of the tools allows for component cure cycles to be in the region of 60 minutes from start to de- mould with a 30 minute dwell above 130° C. The standalone nature of the tooling allows cures for each component to be run independently and eliminates the lost time that components would spend in WIP being held under vacuum whilst waiting for oven or autoclave cure. With a suitable tooling and moulding scheme identified, the next step was to develop a cost- effective method of consolidating the components during cure. Two main criteria were established; to reduce or eliminate,